David Crockett: The Lion of the West.

Michael Wallis. Norton, $26.95 (320p) ISBN 978-0-393-06758-3
Now known as a Disney coonskin-capped country caricature, David Crockett created a lasting persona built on his survival skills, embodiment of manifest destiny, and captivating storytelling, says Wallis. Offering only perfunctory coverage of Crockett's popularly imagined martyrdom at the battle of the Alamo, Wallis (Billy the Kid) sifts through his subject's substantial failures as a wilderness family man (troubled by debt, drink, and often abandoning his family) and business entrepreneur while also detailing overlooked professional successes such as his election to the U.S. and Tennessee legislatures. While Wallis illustrates the formally uneducated frontiersman's remarkable adaptability, Crockett's physical bravery against bears and moral courage in opposing aggressive mistreatment of Native Americans shine through as the defeated legislator finally suggested to his fellow Tennesseans that they "go to hell" while he happily left for Texas. Wallis's well-documented take on the famous pop culture hero reads like fiction, enhanced by flowing prose in portraying a flawed but fascinating frontiersman who faithfully carried a treasured rifle named after his estranged wife, Betsey. 60 illus. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/21/2011
Release date: 05/01/2011
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-393-34227-7
Compact Disc - 978-1-4526-0068-0
MP3 CD - 978-1-4526-5068-5
Open Ebook - 380 pages - 978-0-393-08144-2
Compact Disc - 978-1-4526-3068-7
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